Parkerizing a 1911


November 25, 2012, 04:41 PM
I have an ATI FX GI 45 and I love the pistol. I do not like the finish on it though. I have been throwing around ideas in my head about Dura Coat or Parkerizing. Im not sure which route I should go with it. Have any of you gone either route with your carry pistol? If so what are your likes and dislikes with it.

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November 25, 2012, 04:56 PM
My carry pistol is parkarized. It's alright, but if I was paying for a new finish I'd go for something a little more durable. It's wearing nicely, but I imagine I'll want to refinish it next year. It doesn't keep the rust away as much as I'd like, either.

November 25, 2012, 04:58 PM
Duracoat is a paint, while parkerizing is a electrochemical metal conversion process. Duracoat seals the metal beneath (and requires no preservative to maintain corrosion prevention), while parkerizing changes the metals surface.
Parkerizing by itself is not corrosion resistant and a coating of oil must be applied to obtain resistance. The nice thing about parkerizing is that it "holds" oil very well, and once applied is not easily removed with normal use. Parkerizing also makes an excellent base surface for paint.

I've used DIY Duracoat kits a few times... it's pretty good for what it is, but I prefer to have a Cerakote process done by a professional... when the gun warrants it.

IMHO... If you want your gun to have that cool Army issue look, go with "park"... if you want a more 21st century look, go with a coating.

November 25, 2012, 08:22 PM
If you keep it oiled Parkerizing is one of the best finishes yet developed for firearms. If you can't deal with keeping it oiled then go with a miracle "paint" finish. I'll take Park over any of the shake and bake coatings. They look great but haven't been very durable in my experience with them. I have Parked 1911s that are over 20 years old and look just like they did when new and they have seen heavy use.

November 25, 2012, 10:20 PM
Parkerizing is about the cheapest finish youre going to encounter from the standpoint of having it done commercially. It is easily done yourself if your handy and have access to a bead blaster and SS pot.

It is only barely a step above bluing as far as rust resistance though. A lot of military arms are parked and then painted, which takes care of the corrosion problem nicely.

Park on its own wont hold rust at bay long if you dont constantly stay on top of it, especially in harsh conditions.

Paint is very effective at resisting rust, but I havent seen it hold up to well on a handgun that gets used on a regular basis.

If youre planning on carrying the gun, and are worried about rust, then something like hard chrome, or one of the other more current finishes are best, but they are also more expensive, and not really "GI" looking.

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